[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Commissioners (now Council) of the Town (now Township) of Montclair 4-15-1980 by Ord. No. 80-12 as Art. VIII of Ch. 88 of the 1979 Code. Amendments noted where applicable.]
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- Any building in which four or more persons not related in direct line by blood or marriage to the owner or operator of such business are lodged and served with meals from one kitchen by the owner or operator for a valuable consideration. For the purpose of this chapter, convents or nurses homes connected with a hospital shall not be included as boardinghouses under this definition.
- RELATED BY BLOOD OR MARRIAGE
- Includes only a husband, a wife, sons (and their wives), daughters (and their husbands), parents, grandparents, great-grandparents, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and legally adopted children.
- ROOMING HOUSE
- A building wherein furnished rooms are rented for a valuable consideration to four or more persons not related in direct line by blood or marriage to the owner or operator of such rooming house.
Bona fide employees of the owner or operator, living in and working full-time on the premises, will not be included in the number of persons permitted in either a rooming or boarding house.
No person shall manage, conduct, own or operate the business of keeping a boardinghouse or rooming house without first having obtained a license therefor as hereinafter provided.
Application for a license under this chapter shall be made in writing to the Building Inspector on forms to be provided by him or her and shall be accompanied by the license fee hereinafter specified. The application shall accurately state:
The number of rooms in the house.
The number of rooms to be let to boarders or lodgers.
The number of boarders or lodgers to be accommodated at maximum capacity.
The location of the proposed business.
The names of the owner and of the operator of the premises where the business is proposed to be carried on.
The application shall include an agreement by the applicant to require each occupant of the house not related in direct line by blood or marriage to the owner or operator to register his or her name in a book open to public inspection, together with the date of the beginning of his or her occupancy.
After receiving an application for a license, the Superintendent of Building Inspections or his or her representative shall inspect the premises. No license shall be issued by him or her unless the following requirements are met:
The building shall have a minimum of one complete bathroom with water closet, lavatory and tub or shower bath on each floor having sleeping rooms, except that no bathroom will be required on the third floor unless there are more than two sleeping rooms; provided, however, that in any case there must be at least one complete bathroom for every eight persons or portion thereof residing in the building. Each bathroom shall be accessible to the occupants from their respective sleeping rooms without the necessity of passing through the sleeping room of any other occupant in the building.
If any floor above the second floor of any building is used for sleeping purposes by any persons, each such floor above the second floor shall be provided with at least two exits to the ground, each remote from the other and accessible without passing through any bedroom, bathroom or other private area, one of which said exits may be an outside metal fire escape. The stairway or ladder leading to the ground from the lowest landing of any such outside fire escape shall be permanently fixed at the ground. All requirements pertaining to such exits and outside fire escapes as are set forth in the Basic Building Code and other applicable ordinances of the Township of Montclair, as well as other applicable state and county laws and regulations, must also be complied with.
In any room or group of rooms occupied by one or more persons or by one family in a rooming house, there shall be only one electrical outlet used or usable for cooking purposes. Only one single burner electrical cooking appliance having an electrical demand of not over 1,000 watts shall be connected to this outlet at any one time, and no appliance with an oven or similar attachments shall ever be connected. With respect to this outlet and the electrical supply to it, the owner or operator of the establishment or the tenant shall have and exhibit upon request a written approval for such use in the form of a certificate issued by the Middle Department of the National Board of Fire Underwriters, according to the National Electrical Code for Electric Wiring and Apparatus.
All electrical cooking appliances in use shall be located on a noncombustible base of gypsum board not less than 3/4 of an inch thick and surfaced with a nonabsorbent material or on materials furnishing equivalent fire resistance. All horizontal surfaces under or adjacent to the appliance must be of metal or other nonabsorbent material. The use of sheet metal on combustible material is prohibited. Fixtures and appurtenances of combustible materials and all walls 15 inches or less from any part of an electrical cooking appliance shall be insulated with noncombustible materials. Electrical cooking appliances shall not be used or installed in any location where curtains, drapes or similar furnishings may come in contact with a heating element.
Inspections for compliance with fire and health regulations.
The Superintendent of Building Inspections shall request the Chief of the Fire Department or an authorized member of the Fire Department to inspect the premises for compliance with the Fire Prevention Code. If after inspection by said Chief a fire hazard is disclosed by such inspection as arising by reason of the occupancy which is proposed in the building for which a license is sought, the license shall not be issued; provided, however, that the applicant, upon his or her written request, directed to the Fire Chief, shall have opportunity to be heard with respect to the nature and extent of the fire hazard.
The Superintendent of Building Inspections shall request the Health Officer to inspect the premises for compliance with the Health Code of the Township of Montclair. If after inspection by said Health Officer a health hazard is disclosed by such inspection as arising by reason of the occupancy which is proposed in the building for which a license is sought, the license shall not be issued; provided, however, that the applicant, upon his or her written request, directed to the Health Officer, shall have opportunity to be heard with respect to the nature and extent of the health hazard.
Whenever requested by the Superintendent of Building Inspections, any applicant or licensee shall file with the Building Department a certificate issued by the Middle Department Association of Fire Underwriters, certifying that all wiring in the building is adequate for the purposes for which used.
Occupancy by disabled persons.
Occupancy by a person who is bedridden or disabled to the point of requiring special care is prohibited. The operator of the building is required to report such person to the Building Department, which shall thereupon request the Health Department to investigate the report.
Whenever the Health Department believes that an occupant is bedridden or disabled, the Health Officer may require that the person produce within 48 hours a physician's certification that the person is neither bedridden nor seriously disabled and that he or she is ambulatory and capable of taking care of himself or herself. If the person is unable to produce such a certificate, the Health Department shall order the person to vacate the premises within 24 hours and shall advise the Building Department as soon as the order has been complied with.
There shall be present on the premises at all times a qualified adult who shall be in charge of and responsible for every rooming and boarding house, and the name of this adult shall be on file with the Building Department and the Health Department.
Night-lights shall be provided in all common areas leading to bathrooms and stairs.
In all boardinghouses where food is prepared, the premises shall also be subject to the regulations and requirements of the Health Code and shall be supervised by the Health Officer as well as the Superintendent of Building Inspections.
If the operator of any rooming house does not allow any cooking in individual rooms, said operator may subject to requirements of the Health Department and the Fire Department, establish within the building a community kitchen in which the roomers may do their own cooking.
Every operator shall provide bedding, mattresses, bed linens, blankets, pillows and towels for all occupants. All such items shall be kept in a clean and sanitary condition. Fresh, clean bed linens and towels shall be supplied for each new occupant at the commencement of the term of occupancy and fresh, clean bed linens and towels shall be provided at least once a week.
Each rented sleeping room shall contain within itself a clothes closet, portable wardrobe or other means of hanging the clothing of the occupant within an enclosed compartment.
No room used for sleeping shall be occupied by more than two persons, except that for the purpose of this subsection a child under one year of age shall not be counted.
Licenses shall be issued for a term of one year, commencing on the first day of June of each year and expiring on the 31st day of May next succeeding the issuance of said license. Licenses issued after the first day of June in any year shall expire on the 31st day of the succeeding May.
The fee for a license shall be $25 per year.
Any building licensed as a boardinghouse or rooming house under this chapter may be inspected from time to time by the Superintendent of Building Inspections, the Health Officer or their representatives, and by any officer of the Fire Department, to determine whether said building complies with the provisions of this chapter and all other applicable laws, regulations and ordinances of the Township of Montclair, the State of New Jersey and all bodies or agencies having jurisdiction.
Any license issued under this chapter may be suspended or revoked by the Director of the Department of Public Works or the Director of the Department of Parks and Public Property, after hearing on notice, for violation of the terms of the license, for violation of any township ordinance or regulation for violation of any state statute, for violation of the applicable rules or regulations of any other public agency or body, for making false statements in the application for a license or for failing to promptly notify the Superintendent of Building Inspections of any change of circumstances regarding data supplied on the license application occurring after the filling of the application for a license and before the end of the license year.
[Amended 5-23-2000 by Ord. No. 00-19; 4-10-2007 by Ord. No. 07-17]
Any person who violates any provision of this chapter shall, upon conviction thereof, be punished by a fine not exceeding $2,000, imprisonment in the county/municipal jail for a term not exceeding 90 days, or a period of community service not exceeding 90 days, or any combination thereof as determined by the Municipal Court Judge. Each day on which a violation of an ordinance exists shall be considered a separate and distinct violation and shall be subject to imposition of a separate penalty for each day of the violation as the Municipal Court Judge may determine.